Monday, April 14, 2014

Hello Fellow Writers, Every year in April, I try hard to find a way to celebrate National Poetry Month. For sure, there are some big celebrations going on here and there across the state, even around the nation, and you are lucky indeed if you are included. It is far more low key here in the mountains, but once again I have found a way to personally celebrate. When Kathryn Stripling Byer had to withdraw because of family issues as the judge of the Clay County Poetry Contest, I tried to find another judge to take her place. Finally I gave up and saw it as my opportunity to celebrate poetry. This is an annual event sponsored by the Clay County Historical and Arts Council which I co founded with fellow art teacher Reba Beck 23 years ago. I remember we were both on the Arts Council Board of Directors at the time and they wanted us to do art and poetry contests in the Hayesville schools. We talked about it and decided if the council would make it an annual event, we would coordinate the contests. 

I am covered up with poems from the middle school, high school and adult categories, and I have never felt more involved in National Poetry Month than I do at this moment. Still, I am finding it tough to choose the winners from among so many fine poems written right here in Hayesville, NC.


On the evening of April 22th, Tuesday at 5:00 p.m., you are invited to come celebrate with me at the Hayesville High School Lecture Hall. First there will be an art exhibit and a reception for the winners. I will be reading my poems and  poets will read their winning poems. The program never lasts more than one hour. The auditorium will be packed with parents, grand parents and kinfolks by the dozen. It is free and open to the public. If you have not found a way to celebrate National Poetry Month in Hayesville, please come and join us. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Anne Barnhill's new Novel at City Lights

This Week at City Lights Bookstore


 Anne Clinard Barnhill's Novel of Elizabethan Intrigue

Saturday, April 12th at 3 p.m.
Anne Clinard Barnhill will return to City Lights Bookstore to read from her newest historical novel on Saturday, April 12th at 3 p.m.  Queen Elizabeth's Daughter is the  gripping tale of Mary Shelton, Elizabeth I's young cousin and ward.  When Mary falls in love with a man not of Elizabeth's choosing, her place of privilege is suddenly very much in question.  The young couple could be risking death by defying the wishes of a wrathful queen.  Anne has been writing or dreaming of writing for most of her life. For the past twenty years, she has published articles, book and theater reviews, poetry, and short stories.  She lives with her husband of 30 years in North Carolina.  To reserve copies of her books please click here.  

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


Hello Fellow Writers, Come to the heart of Appalachia and spend the day with writers talking all day about writing. North Carolina Writers Network West's  all day writing conference is set for May 10, 2014 in Sylva, NC. Info below.

List of Workshops and Class Discussions: click  for information.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Celebrate National Poetry Month- Coffee with the Poets

Posted: 31 Mar 2014 11:27 AM PDT
Coffee with the Poets and Writers, a monthly literary event held at Blue Mountain Coffee and Grill, 30 North Carolina 141, Murphy, NC, will celebrate poetry month Wednesday, April, 9, 2014 at 10:30 a.m. Featured will be poet, Brenda Kay Ledford, from Hayesville, NC.  She is a seventh-generational native of Clay County, NC, and holds a Master of Arts in Education from Western Carolina 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Timothy Green, Editor of Rattle in California is calling for your poems. Submit now. Details here.

Dear Nancy Simpson,

With our next tribute deadline fast approaching, I wanted to send everyone a quick reminder about upcoming publishing opportunities at Rattle.

While I’m at it, I’m also happy to announce that we’re now paying professional rates for every poem we publish: $50/each. So not only do we provide one of the largest audiences for poetry in the world, we also get to pay you—I hope we’ll always be one of the first places you send your best poems! We never solicit work directly from anyone, so we always rely on a high volume of quality submissions to make our issues special.

Anyway, here are the calls for submissions:


Issue #45 – Poets of Faith – Deadline: April 15

Our fall issue will be dedicated to Poets of Faith—and by that we mean poets who are adherents to a specific religious faith tradition. In a slight revision to the guidelines, the poems themselves need not be about faith, so long as the poet qualifies. After reading an early batch of submissions, we realized that your spirituality will be embodied somehow in your poetry, even if that’s not what you’re writing about explicitly, and it’s much more interesting to explore the subtle ways that faith affects the work.

So if you consider yourself a Poet of Faith, see our guidelines page, but the gist is this: Send up to six poems on any subject and a note explaining why you qualify to by April 15


Issue #47 – Japanese Forms – Deadline: October 15th

Next spring we’ll be publishing an issue focused on Japanese forms: haiku, renga, tanka, haibun, etc. Nothing matters but the style of the poems, so that should be self-explanatory. Some of the forms are very short, so we’ll say up to six pages of poems, instead of the usual six poems.


Issues #46, #48, #50, etc. – Open Poetry – Deadline: None

Don’t forget that every even issue (summer and winter) has no theme—we just want the best poems we can find, regardless of who wrote what, why, or how. So send us your best work, any time. We read year-round, reply in a month or two (or three, occasionally, I’m sorry), and always love to get a chance to see what you’ve been up to. Don’t hesitate to share.


Our general guidelines are here:  We’ve also finally added a Submittable option, if you prefer that system. But if you have any other questions or comments, feel free to ask me directly.

Best wishes,

P.S. If you’ve already sent work for the Poets of Faith tribute and haven’t heard back, please be patient; we’re focusing on getting caught up on submissions this week. And if you already sent some that we didn’t take, don’t hesitate to send others before the deadline. We’re very hard to please—I know it’s frustrating, but we have to be/get to be. But just because one set of poems didn’t work doesn’t mean the next won’t.

Timothy Green
Editor / Rattle
12411 Ventura Blvd / Studio City, CA 91604 /

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Poetry Contest for Adult Residents of Clay County

In Hayesville, North Carolina we are gearing up 
to celebrate National Poetry Month with Three 
Poetry Contests sponsored each year by the
Clay County Historical and Arts Council. 
Help us spread the word among the practicing 
poets you know who are residents of Clay County
even part time residents if they spend some of the 
year here and are Clay County property owners.

For Poems Written by Adult Citizens.

April is National Poetry Month. Clay County 
Historical and Arts Council announces that 
the 23 Annual Poetry Contests for the best poems
is open. Submissions are being accepted. 
Deadline postmark April 6th.

Prizes are First $30.00, Second $25.00 and 
Third Place $20.00. Winners are asked to read
their winning poems for the arts council on
April 22 at the Evening of Art and Poetry.

Residents of Clay County are asked to submit their  
best 1-5 poems to Mrs. Linda Barrett, English Dept.
at  Hayesville High School, Poetry Contest,  
Address: 205 Yellow Jacket Drive, Hayesville, NC 28904
The poetry judge will be poet Nancy Simpson, 
author of three published poem collections.
You may know her as Ms. Nancy Simpson Brantley,
former teacher with Clay County Schools for 26 years. 

Her most recent book and the only one still 
in print and available for purchase from her press
or from is Living Above the Frost Line - 
New and Collected  Poems (2010 Carolina Wren Press.) 
These poems are written in the voice of a woman 
who is a citizen of the multicultural world, who found  
herself at home on Cherry Mountain right here in 
Clay County. 

Early publicity for this contest announced Kathryn
Stripling Byer as the final judge. She withdrew, due 
to family problems beyond her control. 
Nancy Simpson then agreed to judge the contest 
and to attend the Evening of Art and Poetry held at 
Hayesville High School Lecture Hall on April 22, 2014 
at 5:00 at  which time  a reception will be held in her 
honor and more importantly in honor of the contest 


Monday, March 24, 2014

Posted: 23 Mar 2014 03:25 PM PDT
 Dana Wildsmith  Workshop at Writers Circle around the Table in Hayesville, NC CHANGING FACT TO FICTION, OR: CHANGING I TO US    All we have to work with when we set out down fiction's road is the stuff of our lives, but that's enough. Every one of us has  a couple of horror-story-worthy relatives, and we've all lived through years of high drama in our lives. The material is there, 

contact Glenda Beall (828) 389-4111

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The 2014 NetWest Writers Conference

The NC Writers' Network-West is pleased to announce
the NetWest Writers Conference on May 10, 2014 at 
the historic Jackson County Courthouse Library Complex 
in Sylva, NC.

The Conference will kick off with a Keynote Address 
by Judy Goldman, award winning poet, fiction, and
memoir author. 

Following the Keynote Address will be a presentation 
by renowned Appalachian storyteller and playwright
Gary Carden and talented NCWN/NetWest  Representative
Newton Smith of Gary's new drama about the 1882 death 
of 19 chain-gang workers who were building the Cowee

A workshop discussing how poets can build a readership,
facilitated by NetWest founder and long-time Program
Coordinator, Nancy Simpson  and NCWN/NetWest
Representative and former NC Poet Laureate,
Kathryn Stripling Byer will take place after the lunch break.

The afternoon will continue with workshops by Judy
Goldman and Susan Snowden, award winning author 
of Southern Fried Lies, a novel. 
Fees, Registration and Schedule Fees
Early registration:
$45 for members
$65 for non-members

On-site registration as a walk-in:
$65 for members
$85 for non-members

Note: early registration 
fee includes lunch, provided 
by a caterer. 

Lunch is not an option for 
on-site registrants.

You can join NCWN/NetWest when you register, 
and pay the conference 
member rates plus the appropriate member dues:

$75 standard 1-year membership
$55 senior (65+), student, disabled membership
$130 2-year membership
$130 household 1-year membership

Cancellations must be made in writing and 
arrive at the Treasurer’s address (via USPS 
or e-mail), Newton Smith, 
6875 Canada Rd, Tuckaseegee, NC 28783, 
by 4:00 pm, Monday, May 5, for you to receive 
a refund, less 25 percent. Send request to 
smithnewton (at) 
No refunds for cancellations  received 
after May 5 or 
for no-shows.

Thursday, March 13, 2014


Karen Paul Homes class at Writers Circle
WhenSat, March 22, 1pm – 4pm
Where581 Chatuge Ln, Hayesville, NC, United States (map)
DescriptionKaren Paul Holmes class, 'Express Yourself Through Poetry'. Writers Circle Studio, 581 Chatuge Ln, Hayesville, NC March 22, 1 - 4 p.m. Fee: $35.00

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Kathryn Stripling Byer N.C. Poet Laureate Emeritus will Judge

Kathryn Stripling Byer N.C. Poet Laureate Emeritus will judge the Clay County Arts Council Poetry Contests 
during National Poetry Month.

In Hayesville, North Carolina we are gearing up to celebrate National Poetry Month with Three Poetry Contests that are sponsored annual by the Clay County Historical and Arts Council. Help us spread the word among the practicing poets you know.


POETRY CONTESTS NOW OPEN For Poems Written by Adult Citizens.

April is National Poetry Month. Clay County Historical and Arts Council announces that the 23 Annual Poetry Contests for the best poems by Adult Citizens now open.  The poetry judge this year will be our former N.C. Poet Laureate Kathryn Stripling Byer who will come to Hayesville on April 22, 2014 for the presentation of the awards in April. Residents of Clay County are asked to submit their  best 1-3 poems to Mrs. Linda Barrett at Hayesville High School. Prizes are First $30.00, Second $25.00 and Third Place $20.00.

Clay County Historical and Arts Council announces that the 23 Annual Art and Poetry Contests are now open.   Students are encouraged to open their poetry folders and submit your best work.  As always, prizes will be given to both art entries and poetry entries in contests held at the Middle and High School levels. Winners will read their poems and prizes will be awarded during National Poetry Month April 2014.

The Hayesville Middle School poet must be enrolled at HMS. Submit 1-3 typed poems to Mrs Linda Barrett at Hayesville High School. Deadline  April 6, 2014. Prizes First $30.00, Second $25.00 and Third Place  $20.00.

The Hayesville High School Contest must be enrolled at HHS.  Submit 1-3 typed poems to Mrs Linda Barrett at Hayesville High School. Deadline April 6, 2014. Prizes First $30.00, Second $25.00 and Third Place $20.00.

For artwork, students should check with your art teachers. Art contests entries for Hayesville Middle School and for Hayesville High School will be received by the art teachers. Posters are on display in your school with detailed information. Prizes are the same for both Hayesville Middle and Hayesville High School: First $30.00, Second $25.00 and Third Place  $20.00. There is not an adult category for artwork.


Friday, March 7, 2014


Meet Susan Snowden, author and editor who will be a presenter at the Netwest Writers Conference on May 10 in Sylva, NC. You don’t want to miss this event.

An Atlanta native, Susan Snowden moved to the mountains of western NC in 1995 to have more time to write. Since then her work—fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry—has been published in more than forty literary journals and anthologies. She has received seventeen honors and awards for her writing, including a gold medal in 2013 for her first novel, Southern Fried Lies (IPPY Award; Best Fiction, Southeast Region). Susan has taught writing at Georgia State University in Atlanta, and at Blue Ridge Community in Flat Rock, NC. She’s also worked as a freelance book editor since 1985, editing fiction and nonfiction for publishers and authors. (  

The Netwest Conference will be a one day event at the beautiful public library of Jackson County. This building was once the majestic courthouse sitting on a hill that can be seen for miles around the picturesque little town of Sylva.
Other writers and poets on the program are Judy Goldman, Kathryn Stripling Byer, Nancy Simpson, Newton Smith and Gary Carden.

Fees, Registration and Schedule

Early registration:
$45 for members
$65 for non-members

On-site registration as a walk-in:
$65 for members
$85 for non-members

Note: early registration fee includes lunch, provided by a caterer. Lunch is not an option for on-site registrants.

You can join NCWN/NetWest when you register, and pay the conference member rates plus the appropriate member dues:

$75 standard 1-year membership
$55 senior (65+), student, disabled membership
$130 2-year membership
$130 household 1-year membership

Cancellations must be made in writing and arrive at the Treasurer’s address (via USPS or e-mail), Newton Smith, 6875 Canada Rd, Tuckaseegee, NC 28783, by 4:00 pm, Monday, May 5, for you to receive a refund, less 25 percent. Send request to smithnewton (at) No refunds for cancellations received after May 5 or for no-shows.

Early registration is now open. Please use the form that is found via the tab above to register.

The schedule at a glance can be viewed via the tab above.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014



              On Thursday, February 20, 2014, John Campbell Folk School and N.C. Writers Network West are sponsoring a reading of poetry. The reading is free of charge and open to the public.  Poets Linda Smith and Carole Richard Thompson will be the featured readers. 

Linda Smith, poet and writer, from Hayesville, NC is a long time member of NCWN West. She writes poetry inspired by the mountains that surround this area and from memories of things past.  She also writes essays and fiction. Linda is nearing completion of a mystery novel.  Her poetry has appeared in numerous anthologies such as Lights in the Mountains, Echoes Across the Blue Ridge, anthologies of NetWest, Mountain Time, Sand, Sea and Sail, the Freeing Jonah series, Night Whispers, Looking Back. and Future Cycle 2012.

Carole Richard Thompson
Carole Richard Thompson and her husband moved to Blairsville, in the North Georgia mountains, 21 years ago.  After being a portrait artist for many years, she began to study writing, and joined the North Carolina Writer’s Network. She credits her love for writing to her friend and mentor, Nancy Simpson, whose classes in creative writing and poetry have been her greatest source of inspiration.  Her first short story, “A Bag of Sugar for Paula,” was published in The Liquorian Magazine, and also the anthology, Christmas Presence, published by Catawba Press.  Her story, “The Uniform” appeared in the anthology, Clotheslines, published by Catawba Press.
Carole’s poem, “The House of Cards” appeared in A Sense of Place, an anthology published by Southeast Writers Assoc.  “The Party’s Over”  and “36 Hours” were published in Wild Goose Review ;  “Returning” appeared in the anthology  Echoes Across the Blue Ridge by Winding Path Publishing; “Tar Foot Morning” was recently published Women’s Spaces, Women’s Places,by Stone Ivy Press;  and “Season Change” was published in the  FutureCycle 2011 Flash Fiction Poetry anthology.  Carole’s first chapbook,  Enough,  appeared in February 2013, published by Future Cycle Press.  Carole is also a member of the Georgia Poetry Society

co sponsored by NCWN West and John C Campbell Folk School

Contact:  Lucy Cole Gratton,  Cherokee Representative –NCWN West

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Karen Paul Holmes will Teach a Poetry Class


Hello, Poets and Writers,

Writers Circle studio in Hayesville holds the first class of the season on Saturday afternoon, March 22, 1 - 4 p.m.
Poet Karen Paul Holmes, Georgia Representative for Netwest and facilitator for Writers' Night Out, has prepared a workshop on a subject that is imperative for good poetry.

Express Yourself Through Poetry
Some of us are better than others when it comes to expressing emotion.
Yet the feeling in the poem is what connects it to the reader. In this class we'll explore how to free ourselves in third person or through a persona.
We'll look at examples of heartfelt poems that do not cross the dangerous bridge of sentimentality.
We'll also learn how humor can help communicate serious emotions -- like anger, grief, regret -- in poems that are both salty and sweet, that touch readers' emotional cores while also making them smile.
Class will include an optional prompt ahead of time, so you can bring a poem of your own to share.
We will begin taking registrations for this class on March 1. Space is limited.
Send a check for $35 to Writers Circle. Mail to 581 Chatuge Lane, Hayesville, NC 28904
Glenda C. Beall

Writers Circle